Wednesday, September 27, 2017

The Railwayman's Wife-A Book Review

This story is beautifully written. The characters are well developed and the descriptions of the scenery are so wonderful that I often felt I was right there. Either on the beach or sitting in the car of the train. Well done.

The story is mostly about Annika who lives in Australia. The time is just short years after the end of World War 2. Annika has married the love of her life, Mac. They have an almost 10 year old daughter, Isabel. They live is a house that overlooks the beach and Mac works for the railway which runs along the coast of Australia. The other main characters of the book are Dr. Frank Draper and Roy McKinnon.

Both Dr. Draper and Roy saw the horror of the war. Roy, a poet, can no longer write the beautiful poetry he once wrote. And the doctor carries a huge amount of guilt from being unable to save the people in the death camps. Roy, Frank, and Annika's story become interwoven when Mac suddenly dies in a train wreck.

The story deals with a lot of grief. The lost love of Annika. The lost writing abilities of Roy. And the losses of life for Frank. They each are grieving in their own ways. 

I felt the ending was hurried and didn't end the way I would have wished. But that is what makes me continue to think about the book even after I have put it aside. The "what could have been." But isn't that true about life too? Don't we often dwell on "what would life have been like" if such and such had not happened? Or if only this would have happened? A sad, haunting story! I am giving it **** four stars!

14 comments:

  1. The book sounds like something to read.
    There was an actual family, here, in the States, who lived through something similar to this. The young wife and mother, a quilter, lost her husband, this was during the Depression, in a train yard accident. He worked for the railroad, and got caught on the tracks, and was totally dismembered. His wife collapsed and lost her mind when his fellow workers,fearing for her, would not let her see his body.
    The story goes on to say that she started a quilt of tiny scrapes of cloth, many people contribute to it so that she could do the only thing she could even bear to do, stitch all those pieces back together. And when it was done, her mind was healed. The story was told by her son, who watched it all happen to his mother. He told the story somewhere where I read it, in a history of the Midwest way back when... He said that by the time his mother got that quilt stitched together, her mind had healed. It was an unforgettable story. Probably pretty much like this one.

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    1. Sounds like an amazing story Zippi! I will have to go on a search and see if I can find it.

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  2. Sad story. Glad you enjoyed it.

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  3. Grief is so personal. Ya, I've definitely spent time wondering, "What if?"

    I don't know that I'm emotionally ready to engage again, but sure appreciate this candid review.

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  4. Sounds like a good book to "escape" into instead of being overwhelmed with problems around one. Definitely on my reading list.

    betty

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    1. So many other problems out there....that is what this book brought to me!

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  5. I loved this book, such a beautiful, beautiful story. Heartbreaking but beautiful.

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  6. My list of books is long again and I have several I still need to review. I am listening to another James Hankins right now.

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    1. I know Wendy! So many good books, so little time!

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